Cooperative movement in Tibetan community in exile started as early as 1963. The primary objective of Tibetan co-operative movement is to attain social and economic betterment of Tibetan refugees which in turn contributes towards strengthening of sustainable Tibetan settlements. Currently there are 15 Tibetan co-operatives in India, legally registered under 9 different State Co-operative Acts. All these co-operatives run different activities which help contributes towards agriculture farming, cultural preservation, employment generation, and financial support to share members and general public.

For long time, Tibetan cooperatives had been in operation with least communication with other Tibetan cooperatives. There was no common forum for these co-operatives for exchange of ideas and information in various aspects of its functioning. The scope for strengthening cooperative movement within Tibetan community; cooperation and mutual-help among cooperatives was limited. There was also one common problem which needs to be addressed i.e, marketing of handcraft product. The need of bringing all the co-operative societies functioning under one apex body in the form of federation was felt need. With the consistent guidance and detailed plan from CTA, the first federal body of Tibetan co-operatives was legally registered on 20th April 2005 under the Multi-State Co-operative Societies Act, 2002, as Federation of Tibetan Co-operatives in India Ltd which is commonly known by name FTCI.

Presently there are more than 24,000 Tibetan refugees who are shareholders of 15 co-operatives. FTCI and 15 co-operatives provide support and benefit to these shareholders in the field of Education, Finance, Employment, and Rural Development and so on.

There are over 160 staff in FTCI and over 600 staff in 15 co-operative societies.

Vision of FTCI:

1) To make endevour toward achieving viable and sustainable Tibetan settlements.
2) To strengthen and to provide assistance to member co-operative societies.
3) To strive for attaining sustainable markets for the products of member co-operative societies.
4) To generate employment opportunities especially for Tibetan youth and to develop human resource expertise
5) To focus on diversification and to improve the infrastructure needs.

Objectives of the Federation:

1. To procure manufactured items of handicraft from member co-operative societies and to arrange for marketing in domestic and international market.

2. To provide training, legal and technical guidance, management development service, and to prepare developmental plan, etc to the member co-operative societies.
3. To supervise and co-ordinate the activities of the member societies.
4. To strive to generate substantial profit from existing business units and to diversify new business activities.
5. To continue marketing organic crops.

Units of FTCI:

FTCI runs 5 business units. They are
1) Hotel Tibet Dharamsala
2) Hotel Tibet Gangtok
3) Hotel Tibet Bangalore
4) FTCI Delhi Export Unit
5) FTCI Trading Co & Beverages, Bylakuppe
Visit for more details.

FTCI Delhi Export Unit:

FTCI Delhi Export Unit (formally Tibetan Refugee Self Help Handicrafts –TRSHH) was started in 1981 under the management of Department of Home, CTA. TRSHH aimed to promote and export Tibetan Carpets and Handicrafts. Since 1985, TRSHH had been working under Fair Trade Circles. In 2006 during CTA disinvestment period, TRSHH was privatized to FTCI Delhi Export Unit.

FTCI Export Unit is a Manufacturer & Exporter of Assorted Cotton Canvas Bags, Jewelleries, and Fashion Accessories. All kinds of Tibetan ritual items, Tibetan incenses and Tibetan home furnishing items are manufactured in compliance with Fair Trade Principles. FTCI Export Unit also strives to achieve sustainability of its producer groups, grass root level workers, artisans and farmers in the supply chain. FTCI Delhi Unit is committed to the sustainability and growth of thousands of Tibetan Refugees in India.

The principle objective of federation is to promote the interest of its member co-operative to attain its social and economic betterment through self-help and mutual aid in accordance with co-operative principles. The Area of operation of the federation is confined to the States of Karnataka, Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra, Jammu and Kashmir, Arunachal Pradesh, Orissa, Himachal Pradesh, Sikkim and West Bengal.